Saturday, November 19, 2011

From the archives: Millarmitts

Millarmitts in Orvis Catalog circa 1968

Here's a sporty wool knit glove style worth reviving. In my years of browsing outdoor clothing catalogs, I somehow overlooked what's known as the Millarmitt (modern manufacturers have morphed the "a" to an "e"). According to catalog patter, the gloves are hand crocheted in the UK of silicone treated wool, with slip resistant cotton palms.
Millarmitts offered by Patagonia circa 1975 (full catalog scan here)


I understand that the Millarmitt is traditionally popular with technical climbers and fly fisherman. The fingerlessness provides extra dexterity and, even when wet, the wool will keep the hands warm. I'd wear these for cycling or walking the hound. My use of a smart phone makes the fingerlessness extra appealing (no touch screen gloves at Archival).

Made to order Millarmitts from Chester Jeffries

Archival Finder Alan Woods located a modern source for Millarmitts in the UK, Chester Jeffries (a company deserving of its own "shopping from" post). I have not verified that the gloves are still being knit by English women in their own homes.

For more on the history of Millarmitts, see John Crispin's informative post.

7 comments:

James Black said...

Not archival, but I'm digging these half-finger half-mitten gloves from Muji:
http://www.muji.us/store/apparel/others/mens-lamb-wool-1-2-finger-gloves.html

Andrew said...

Those are really nice, although I'd like them better with a leather palm, like an old-school cycling glove.
In the meantime, Patagonia fingerless gloves are a good synthetic alternative -- I never go winter steelheading without them.

Anonymous said...

http://oliverspencer.co.uk/shop/category/mens/Gloves/

Anonymous said...

I picked up a pair of those MUJI ones and they're great. The button is a little dainty and will probably fall off before the winter is through, but they look really good and have a great soft lining.

Grant said...

Take a look at this link - it is to the 1972 Chouinard catalog. They have these gloves on page 63. Pretty fun stuff! Thanks as always for your blog; I love it.

http://climbaz.com/chouinard72/chouinard.html

Second Nature Landscaping said...

I bought some of the heavy weight Dachstein mittens for winter riding in Edmonton Alberta.
It was -22 C last night and I am pleased to report warm hands with out a liner or a shell.
I am looking to find or make a cotton leather outer for colder weather.

http://www.sweatersintl.com/store/index.html

Keep up the great work AC!

allen said...

I always wanted a pair of millar mitts when I was growing up but they were not sold in central Minnesota. By the time I moved to Minneapolis the mitts were long gone. Great post, I am talking myself into buying a pair from England.